Exit polls from this week’s US mid-term elections suggest that almost a third of gay voters backed the Republican party.

The figure, gathered by CNN, found that only three per cent of the 17,504 voters surveyed in the exit polls said they were gay, lesbian or bisexual. Thirty-one per cent of these said they voted Republican.

In a similar 2008 poll, 27 per cent backed the party. During the 2006 mid-terms, 24 per cent of the gay voters surveyed supported the Republicans and 23 per cent supported the party in 2004.

Republican gay group GOProud said the results should be a “wake-up call” to gay rights groups who had “become little more than a subsidiary of the Democrat Party.”

Executive director Jimmy LaSalvia told Politico.com: “The gay left would have you believe that gay conservatives don’t exist.

“Now we see that almost a third of self-identified gay voters cast ballots for Republican candidates for Congress in this year’s midterm.”